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August 2, 2013
Inside the Astrotech Payload Processing Facility on Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the upper Delta Payload Attach Fitting (UDPAF) is lowered toward the lower Delta Payload Attach Fitting (LDPAF) at right. The UDPAF will hold the CALIPSO satellite and the LDPAF holds the CloudSat satellite. The two sections will be mated. CALIPSO stands for Cloud-Aerosol Lidar and Infrared Pathfinder Satellite Observation. CALIPSO and CloudSat are highly complementary satellites that will provide never-before-seen 3-D perspectives of how clouds and aerosols form, evolve, and affect weather and climate. CALIPSO and CloudSat will fly in formation with three other satellites in the A-train constellation to enhance understanding of our climate system. Launch of CALIPSO/CloudSat aboard a Boeing Delta II rocket is scheduled for 3:01 a.m. PDT Sept. 29. Credit: NASA

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